Covid bulletin flags almost 1,500 new cases in 24-hours

Three deaths (two in people over the age of 80) and 1,497 new cases – of which 964 were in the Lisbon/ Vale do Tejo Delta variant ‘black spot’.

This is the main picture coming out of today’s Covid bulletin which shows that ‘incidence continues to increase’, and is now well over the ‘red line’ of 120 cases per 100,000 – with an average on the mainland of 128 cases per 100,000.

The rest of the information is a question of breaking areas down. The Algarve, for example, has recorded 127 new cases today (yesterday’s tally was 70). It’s a major leap.

BUT there are always other interpretations that (for reasons unclear) never really get a look-in to reports. Perhaps the most relevant as the nation is battered by daily counts on the basis of PCR tests is that German scientists have concluded that “a positive RT-PCR test alone is not sufficient evidence that those tested can also transmit the coronavirus to other people”.

First author Professor Dr Andreas Stang, director of the institute of medical informatics, Biometry and Epidemiology at Essen University Hospital, suggests that “the number of SARS-CoV-2 positive tests calculated should not be used as a basis for pandemic control measures, such as quarantine, isolation or lockdown”.

Queries over the reliability of PCR tests have been sounded since the ‘early days’ (click here). But this latest information, published last week, appears to be the first time scientific papers actually corroborate the notion that the pandemic may be based on unreliable forms of testing.

The Essen information, along with similar findings from Münster university have been published on university websites (click here). With luck, the discoveries will lead to changes, which may (almost certainly should) change the whole pandemic panorama.

Germany’s tagnews online has reported on the findings (click here) has has OE24 (click here). This far the articles don’t appear to have been picked up internationally.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com